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10 Tips For Getting Your Basketball Team Focused, Motivated, And Playing Hard!

- By

"Coaches who can outline plays on a blackboard are a dime a dozen. The ones who win get inside their players and motivate." -- Vince Lombardi

One of the biggest challenges that basketball coaches of all levels face is the challenge of keeping your players focused, motivated to play, and playing as hard as they can. The following are 10 tried and true tips to keep your team motivated.

1. Set a precedent on the first day of practice. Establishing your expectations from the very beginning is the best way to not only establish your role within the team but to also let your players know what kind of coach you're going to be.

For example: As your first practice starts and players are milling about blow your whistle and call them to the center of the gym. If they don't sprint to you, they get to run right then and there. After they've run, blow the whistle again. This time all your players will enthusiastically sprint to you. And more importantly, you'll have their full attention for the rest of the year.

2. Show your players that they matter. Probably the most effective method for getting your players to work hard for you, and for themselves, is to let them know that you care about them.

Show interest in their lives outside of basketball. Get to know your players as individuals. Spend time talking to them one on one. It doesn't have to be for hours; a couple minutes will do the trick. The point is to let them know that they're important to you on and off the basketball court.

3. Model motivation in all of your actions. Have fun, remain positive, and let your players know what is expected of them immediately. Your players will pick up on everything that you say and do and they will respond accordingly. Verbalize your philosophy so your players know what to expect and to what to strive for.

For example: If you tell your players that the best rebounders will be starters, then players will all strive to be good rebounders. You've told them through your words and actions that rebounding is important to you.

It's all about what you emphasize! If you're constantly talking about rebounding, you're players will pick up on that and become good rebounders.

4. Offer verbal rewards. Rewards grab attention - players and people love compliments. Whether you're running beginner basketball drills or drills that require more skill, give praise for improvement and for working hard.

Occasionally, for significant effort, praise players in front of the team. Public praise is often well received and players will work hard to earn such praise. Remember that if negative feedback is required to sandwich it between positive feedback. For example: "You did a great job hustling down the court, next time wait for a better shot. Keep up the great hustle and the good shots will be there for you."

5. Offer occasional non-verbal rewards. Players can be motivated to achieve goals by occasionally offering tangible rewards like a Gatorade or by utilizing a tactic of the great Morgan Wooten. Wooten offered "Permissions" to his players.

Permissions were rewards granted to players based on outstanding efforts or reaching set goals. The permissions are earned throughout the practice and then totaled up at the end. Each permission resulted in one less lap, suicide, or other conditioning drill.

You can also add laps to players for not meeting expectations. For example you can set up a basketball rebounding drill and players that get 5 or more rebounds pick up a permission and those that get less than 4 pick up a lap.

6. Coach the success of the team. When it comes down to it, it is more fun to win together than it is to win alone and basketball is a team sport. Your players are more likely to give greater effort if they know the team is counting on them. By reminding players, through your actions and words that they are a team, they'll be motivated to work together to succeed.

Often this can be accomplished by verbally praising players that are working well together or by offering a non verbal reward for practices where they work together particularly well. Also, by knowing your players strengths and weaknesses you'll be able to keep an eye out for potential conflicts and enforce a team attitude.

7. Add competition to your drills. A great way to spice things up and keep players working hard is to add competition to your drills.

As an example, you could establish teams for a shooting drill and reward the team or individual player that makes the most shots successfully.

With a little imagination, you can come up with ways to make almost all your drills competitive. Just remember that comparisons between teammates can make some players feel badly about themselves and can spur rivalries between teammates. In short, it can squash a player's motivation. If you need to compare teammates, do so only to model a desired behavior or skill. For example, "Watch how Joe follows through with his free throw shot, try that next time you're at the line and see how it feels."

8. Teach visualization. Visualization is a valuable coaching tool and it is the one skill that all athletes can take away from their sport, no matter what level they perform at, and use the skill to attain success the rest of their lives.

Teach your players to visualize reaching their goals. Visualization teaches focus. It teaches planning, executing, and succeeding. Incorporate a few minutes of visualization in each practice by asking the team to visualize a play that they're having difficulty perfecting, a shot that they need to work on, or executing the drill of their choice.

Teach them to utilize all their senses in the visualization so that they can hear the ball bouncing, see the ball bouncing, and feel their gym shoes squeak on the floor.

9. Don't punish, discipline with the intent to teach. Punishment for poor or inappropriate behavior only serves to fragment the teams focus and hinder their motivation. Instead, discipline with the intent to teach your players how to conduct themselves appropriately.

Rather than yell or punish players that aren't living up to their potential, ask them, "Is that the best you can do? Are you trying your hardest?" Often simply by acknowledging to you or to themselves that they're not trying their hardest, players will try harder, particularly if they know that you notice.

Additionally, discipline with consistency. For example, if it is unacceptable to be late to practice then all who are late to practice receive the exact same consequences no matter what.

10. Set the right type of goals for your team and for your players. Players and teams need goals so that they know what to focus on and they know what to strive for. But the key is the "type" of goals you choose...

I'm a firm believer that you should NOT set goals for the prestigious statistics, like scoring the most points and even winning games. Players already want those things without setting goals. Not to mention, it gives them the wrong idea.

However, if you set goals for other critical aspects of the game you will see huge success!

You can set goals for a low number of turnovers, team shooting percentage, your opponents shooting percentage, team rebounds (not individual), defensive stats, and possessions per game. You always want more possessions that the other team and that comes from rebounding and taking care of the basketball.

You could even have conditioning goals like 100 push-ups or run a mile in less than 5 minutes. Just be careful about the message you send your players when setting goals. When used properly, goals are a powerful motivator.

Don't forget to reward players for achieving their goals.

If you'd like a ready built system to motivate your players with goals and statistics, try out the Value Point System. It's one of the most effective ways to motivate players and keep them working hard all year round.

Know that what motivates some players will not motivate others. It is important to get to know your players as individuals and to know how they will respond individually and as a team to motivational tactics. In the end, if you're involved, excited, and willing to take the time to keep practices interesting, then your team will respond.

For more motivation tips, check out the Ultimate Guide to Player Motivation.

What do you think? Let us know by leaving your comments, suggestions, and questions...


Tony G says:
12/27/2006 at 3:09:35 PM

Thanks for your informative and highly relevant newsletter. Much Appreciated.

fee says:
12/27/2006 at 6:45:14 PM

Great suggestions. Although it's mostly common sense... It's good to see it in writing.

Fadi Murra says:
12/28/2006 at 3:59:31 AM

There is no comments, only what i would like to say is that you are so grate and wonderful coach.

and really i took many tips that will help me in coaching and dealing with my basketball team. and i have to introduce to you my self, i am Fadi MURRA, a christian palestinian from bethlehem and i am a coch and player at the same...

and i do not now if you could do a favour for me, that i would some notes about how to deal or how to start or whats the prosedures for the first day training or meeting with a new team? especially with tean who speaks too much and not that concentrate in the training ... and also if you could help me to what shull i speak and do for the first meeting of the new team.???

It will be greatfull from you for any help and assitant to me...

and a Merry Christmas to you and wish you a happy new year, my your wishes for the year 2007 will come true...

Sicerely Yours,

FAdi Murra

Email :

Richard Rowe says:
1/1/2007 at 11:17:28 PM

9. Don't punish, discipline with the intent to teach. Punishment for poor or inappropriate behavior only serves to fragment the teams focus and hinder their motivation. Instead, discipline with the intent to teach your players how to conduct themselves appropriately.

Rather than yell or punish players that aren't living up to their potential, ask them, "Is that the best you can do? Are you trying your hardest?" Often simply by acknowledging to you or to themselves that they're not trying their hardest, players will try harder, particularly if they know that you notice.

Additionally, discipline with consistency. For example, if it is unacceptable to be late to practice then all who are late to practice receive the exact same consequences no matter what.
This is the awesome advise for any coach of any sport. Thanks so much.

Garry Abben says:
1/12/2007 at 10:41:12 AM

Informative! I've been coaching a long time, and it's agood reminder for all of us to discipline, not punish. There is a huge difference!

Derrick Morgan says:
1/19/2007 at 2:08:04 PM

I believe that visualization is an underutilized technique that really provides concrete benefits to players. As a player I used it to prepare for game time situations, and I even use it as a coach as part of final game planning.

Gary Gill says:
11/19/2007 at 9:20:48 PM

wonderful suggestion i am learning something new everytime i read your articles.I am better able to manage my training.

Coach O says:
11/21/2007 at 8:19:07 PM

I also agree with not punishing but sometimes struggle with what type of discipline then would be best? I hate to have them run killers or do pushups as these type of things are used for training anyways. Killer type running drills with the ball are part of our training with a new twist added to it each time and pushups are a great tool for gaining strength and I don't want a discipline to be something that is a positive training tool. I don't want them to associate something that is used for discipline is also used for training!

Jeff Haefner says:
11/26/2007 at 11:26:41 AM

Coach O,

Other types of discipline and motivation include:

- Playing time. If your kids are old enough, this is the ultimate motivator. If they want to play, they need to listen to you. Sit them on the bench and let them know why. See how they react in the future.

- Show you care. Simply by showing interest in their lives outside of basketball shows you care. This greatly helps with player motivation.

- Explain the reason why. Many times coaches forget to explain the reason they are doing something and just tell them to do the drill because you said so.

Hope this helps.


Coach Ivan, Salesian High School says:
11/29/2007 at 1:35:11 PM

It is an important aspect of the game to set obtainable goals. An example of a short term goal would be to obtain a league championship. An example of a long term goal (as it relates to the sport of basketball), would be to obtain a division championship, city/state title.
Without discipline, there is no structure. Without structure, you have no success.

dr Manish Parihar says:
12/1/2007 at 10:59:58 AM

nicely written

Dr Manish Parihar SMS Medical College jaipur INDIA says:
12/1/2007 at 11:10:26 AM

To promote Basketball we need 4M -Means

Coach O says:
12/1/2007 at 11:17:53 AM

I understand that having a disciplined team with attainable goals is extremely important and I thank you for posting those feedback comments. What I am really looking for is some techniques used in practice for 5th graders in terms of discipline/consequences when they are playing very sloppy...not listening...fooling around, etc. What does anyone suggest could be used to stop this behavior during an important part of our practice time? As I mentioned in an earlier posting, I do not wish to associate a positive training tool such as push-ups or killer type drills (with the ball) to be associated with a discipline during a rough part of practice. I most always involve the whole team when one player has hurt the flow of practice and I do that so the team knows we are a team good times or bad. If it gets bad enough, I do remove that particular player from practice and he will go and sit down and we will talk it through later. I do not want to waste much practice time for the discipline to take place but I do wish to send a strong message about behavior that is not acceptable and unproductive for the team.

Dr Manish parihar SMS Medical College Jaipur basketball player Rajasthan India says:
12/2/2007 at 8:15:38 AM


12/13/2007 at 9:41:38 PM


Dr Manish Parihar SMS Medical College JAIPUR INDIA says:
12/16/2007 at 9:19:15 AM

Respected Sir/Madam
I am Basketball Player and Cricketer with that I have also given little bit of coaching to my medical college basketball and cricket team I am physiologist ,teacher in medical college as well as life member Indian Federation of Sports Medicine.Baketball is official state sports in Rajasthan , I want to know how sports medicine can help besides your tips to lift standard of Basketball Globelly -Thanks

Yolanda says:
1/24/2008 at 1:35:56 PM

As a new coach of our church's girls basketball team, I am estatic to have come across this website. It is just what I needed. I plan to use everything you have suggested! I too would like more on the concept of discipling to teach instead of to punish. In fact, this concept is universal and can and should be applied to all aspects of life when we find ourselves in leadership roles with disciplinary responsibilities.
Can some one please provide a list of disciplinary actions that relate to common miscues occuring both at practice and during actual games? That would make this website even more comprehensive.
I will visit this site often!
Thank you!

Coach T says:
3/8/2008 at 4:09:20 PM

great stuff i needed to see it glad i got this info

Coach says:
3/13/2008 at 2:38:31 PM

The tips were great!It''s always a plus to hear things that remind you of your main objective.

Coach "K" says:
3/13/2008 at 2:43:07 PM

alot of my questions were answered in the 10 tips.thanks alot for the tips

Juan Castro says:
3/30/2008 at 2:27:33 AM

Highly informative! It brings back the memories when i was still playing competitive basketball.Now that im coaching,the tips you gave serve as reminders which can help make a team a disciplined one.Thanks a lot.

Coach Juan Castro

david says:
3/31/2008 at 1:59:41 PM

this coment is for the person who posted about the 5th grade team and disapline, i belive it was coach O. i think u should focous on the kids having alittle fun, at any age the kids want to win but some times we as coaches and parents go overboard with the kids being overly focused or focused every min. of practice. dont get me wrong win baby win. litin up have some fun your self at practice. then let them know hey we are about to go over something new or this is what we are having trouble with time to focus.

kkkk says:
4/3/2008 at 6:01:08 PM


Beau says:
4/8/2008 at 8:25:41 AM

Great tips, your stuff is a good read

patricio bridgewater says:
4/13/2008 at 4:26:06 PM

you probably won't believe what I'm about to say (write) I know very little about basketball. I'm a level II volleyball trainer/coach. Your articles inspire me to learn more. I realy enjoy reading all your articles wheter it's an advice or simply teaching how achieve the maximum of your players. I never came across so much information. Since reading your articles I've become more aware of training my youth. I'm now using your articles to inspire other coaches. Thanks thanks thanks

hans van gils says:
7/10/2008 at 12:58:48 PM

keep going.

Fran Whitford says:
10/1/2008 at 12:59:13 AM

Visualization is a positive form of day dreaming. It can be very valuable in helping a player develop an idea of a certain aspect of the game, especially one with which the player has difficulty.
In coaching players whom you do not have more than one or two days a week, be very careful about the physical end of the game. Go easy on suicides, etc. unless they all are in good shape. I coach a youth team, 4th, 5th, and 6th grade girls. We practice once a week and play once or twice a week. It would be counter productive to work on conditioning at only one practice per week.

george young says:
10/2/2008 at 10:25:18 AM

I am writing from the only country in the world that basketball is the #1 sport
here children start playiny competitivly at 5-6 years old.
I have coached girls youth basketball here for over 20 years.
I have found everything in the 10 steps to be on the mark but i would like to add that every coach is his own person and by that i mean is that every coach can take different things from different coaches and his or hers life experiances and mold his or her philosophytoward practice
I for one dont use punisment as a term I use the prase "TO CORRECT" and '" CONSEQUENCES "" since in the game when you commit a mistake and it is not corrected the team suffers consequences.



george young says:
10/2/2008 at 10:42:14 AM

7 1/2 FEET FOR 5---6 AND 8 1/2 FEET FROM 7 -12 YEARS OLD

THE BALL FOR 5-10 YEARS OLD IS 27.5 AND THE 10-12 IS 28.5





coach nice says:
10/24/2008 at 12:50:56 AM

all i can say is THANKS... i've read all the comments and i learned how to discipline a player in a nice way.

Ariel Rabe says:
10/29/2008 at 12:08:28 AM

Allow me to share our humble experience here.

I always remind the kids of our 4 simple rules:

1. Learn to listen
2. Be obedient
3. Be respectful
4. Be humble

I just ask them, what is our number one rule and they answer... and so on.

And just let them hear from me more often the words, coachable, trainable.

Also, before or after we end the practice session, I start by saying: "Basketball discipline is..." the kids then will say ..."Basketball training." and vice-versa.

I formed two groups. One for advanced (Saturdays) and the other for beginners (Sundays) and with discipline problems and always remind them that it is church day.

If I notice a kid who can go up to advanced level, I immediately tell that kid.

I focus on footwork (speed, etc.), teaching the fundamentals (dribbling, shooting) the right way. The teaching points. The kids hear from me the word "Again..." So, I tell them if they do not want to here it, then listen well, focus, don''t be afraid to commit mistakes in practice. My praises are: Very good and shake the hand of the kid or touch the top of the kid''s head and most often I clap my hands hard for a properly done (no fancy) move.

And for kid/s who arrives early, that kid will be rewarded to lead our "closing rite." The kid will firmly and loudly say: "No to Smoking in 3... 1 2 3... and we all shout at the top of our voice "No to Smoking!"

Thanks a lot for this opportunity.

Tommy T says:
11/8/2008 at 12:49:22 AM

Great stuff! Will use it this season.

Newbie says:
11/8/2008 at 4:36:03 PM

I have read all the pieces here and agree with everything said. I am now coaching basketball to 5-8th graders which I have never done before. Does anyone have any specific suggestions on how this age group should be worked with and how they should be treated. Also, how specific should you get with drills and information about the game? What type of drills should I do and how do you make them fun?

Joe Haefner says:
11/9/2008 at 9:21:10 AM

Hi Newbie,

We have a section on our website specifically for youth coaches at this section:

We also have a middle school section which has some similar stuff:

george young says:
11/12/2008 at 10:48:41 AM


alice says:
11/20/2008 at 7:25:22 PM

I volunteer at the local "Y." I am a female and my son is also on the team. I have all boys and 2 girls. These kids are 10-12 yrs old. This is the second time I've coached. My brother and his friend do most of the plays. but I am the "disciplinarian." You should have seen the look on their faces (and their dads) when I told them I am their coach. I start the first day by getting all the kids and their parents in a group. I let them know that I will not tolerate fooling around, showboating, disrespect to me or their teammates. I make sure to tell the boys that if they fail to acknowledge the girls, they will be pulled out of practice or the game. I then look at each and every parent and ask them directly if I have their support. And I always do. My brother and my other coach are not as vocal as I am. I have 2 sons. 11 and 8 yrs old. I do not tolerate disrespect from them and I won't take it from the kids. Our team is very respectful of each other, the boys pass to the girls and give them direction during the game. My most improved player is a girl. My kids talk to me about personal things that are going on in their life. They trust me. We do dribbling drills, layups, they work on boxing out and following their shots. I throw in some games to teach aggression - who wants the ball the most? As a female, coaching a mainly boys team, I go out there and show them how to "box out." This kind of makes them uneasy at first because I'm doing the "gut in the butt" technique. They hate to be outdone by a girl, and now have this technique down! We only practice 2 hours a week, so we don't do much suicides or laps, what's the use? I know they don't do them the rest of the week. If you have a coed team the same age as my kids, I tell the girls not to be intimidated by the boys and that I am not going to tell the boys to "slow down" because the girls are playing. My girls can keep up with the best of them now! Basically, I treat the kids like I do my own kids. I make sure I have the parents on my side right off the bat. I tell the kids that they are big kids now and that I'm not there to babysit them and if they are not there to learn and be 100% of the team, then maybe they should ask their parents to put them with someone else. I don't say this in a way to offend, but I do make sure that I am understood by both kids and their parents. You have to have the parents on your side!

EP says:
1/29/2009 at 12:14:09 PM

Great article! I wish I had discovered this site earlier. Thanks

EP says:
1/29/2009 at 12:37:01 PM

What are some drills or skills that can be use for talking, playing and distractions. I have tried talking to them one- on - one and as a group.

Joe Haefner says:
1/29/2009 at 3:59:25 PM

Hi EP,

I guess it depends on what age level you are referring to. If they are young kids, that is very typical. Just keep lectures short, keep things fun, and make drills competitive. The last thing you want to be is a drill sargeant for a young group of kids.

I wrote a short article on how to keep your player's attention at this link:

Emily says:
2/1/2009 at 3:07:23 PM

Thanks for the tips!!
I am going to print of and give it to my dad.
He is my coach. Our team has not ben foused at practice lately.

Torey McCray says:
4/9/2009 at 12:22:12 PM

Thanks for the newsletter. It will be helpful for the rest of our AAU season.

Mark says:
4/18/2009 at 3:32:18 PM

Next year I am planning on being a traveling league coach. I've coached lower league's and one thing that I've come acrossed that is a practice "breaker" is the lack of "flow" to each practice. Basketball is a simple game based on three elements that are usually broadened. Pick and roll, give and go and focus on playing defense with your feet!! Simple!!! Most all complex game plans are based from this two items. First defense...I teach defense with the feet. Low post is the same with one hand up and the other at waist level. Bent waist and head up. Offensively, I've ran all my drills with flow. I noticed a drill this website had about quick lay up drills. Run from the baseline to the free throw line, pivot and run a lay up. The only problem with the drill is that it has no flow. Running the lay up and then stopping yourself to get your own rebound stops the follow through on the lay up. And your interfering with the next group of kids running the drill from the end line. Have the kid run his lay up and go to the outlet position. The next kid in line takes the rebound, missed or made, kicks the outlet to the kid that just ran his lay up. The kid that just kicked the rebound to the outlet, runs his portion of the drill. The kid at the outlet either kicks the ball to a coach or helper to a position between top of key and 10 second line(center court east and west) or dribbles, with the proper hand, to that same court position. The kid gives up the ball and returns to the back of the drill line. The drill completes the hustle, grab and pivot, ball handling to the hoop with a lay up, getting yourself to the right position for outlets and then getting used to keeping the ball in the center of the court, part of the game. The kid starting the drill gets used to rebounding and looking for the outlet to start the break or set up the offense.
I hope this helps out anyone on this board. It's my experience to teach these basics but keeping it "flowing". Long message yes but I just like to help when I can!!!
Have fun, guys!!!

6/9/2009 at 9:16:08 AM

in malaysia under 16 competitions also uses the 5-5-2 systems.12 players get the chance to play.this comment hopefully answers george young''''s question.

besides physical fitness,mental fitness is very important for youths during affects players when they are nervous and will under perform.even the best of players suffer from this setback.
As a coach i always apply a bit of psychology with the players and it always worked.

Nesta says:
8/22/2009 at 7:47:38 PM

Great reinforcements. Thank you!

Jerry says:
10/13/2009 at 2:17:48 PM

Tonight is our first practice of the new season and I am a volunteer coach with one of my best friends being the head coach and I can't wait to get to our first practice after reading your wonderful tips on the game and how to get the kids to work harder. i played professional golf on the PGA tour and Champions tour for 28 years and have always been a basketball junkie. Last year was my first year helping out and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I try to learn as much as I can and I'll be reading your articles daily. I have learned an awful lot from my friend and will learn a lot more from your articles.THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!!!

Mike Klu says:
11/9/2009 at 8:56:10 PM

Great Tips
I also teach my kids STUFF

Dewitt Christopher Flowers says:
1/14/2010 at 11:07:06 AM

I think this is a great way to get the person stated in the right direction thanks

Dewitt Christopher Flowers says:
1/14/2010 at 11:09:25 AM

I think this is a great way to get the person stated in the right direction for life as well tks

John Doe says:
1/26/2010 at 8:53:39 AM

KUDOS! to point #2! I would also say:
"Players don't care how much you know, until they know how much you care."

BobM says:
2/2/2010 at 10:37:24 PM

Great input and the drills presented are very helpful. This is my 2nd season and this information is enhancing my experience greatly. THhanks.

Nathalie says:
2/23/2010 at 9:30:00 AM

Thanks for the great info guys. My daughter plays for a competitive league at Bantam level and as a parent, and hopefully future coach, I love your approach to the psychological and mental aspects of coaching. THEY ARE SOOOOOO IMPORTANT!!!!
Thanks for continuously pointing it out. People often don''t remember this stuff until players are in a slump.
Keep up the great work of informing us all with such good feedback.

Levi says:
4/24/2010 at 5:10:13 PM

As always well put letter and informational tips Thanks again

Coach S. says:
6/15/2010 at 9:45:36 AM

After 22 years of coaching, I can tell you that all kids are different. How you address one player may not work the same on another. Be consistent with you discipline but, know your players and what they respond to best. It make take being "nose to nose" with some but sometimes it just takes you letting them know that you have confidence in the to get them to perform better.

Coach Brumley says:
1/21/2011 at 1:31:31 PM

These are all the basic that we all need to be reminded of from time to time no matter waht levels we r coaching. This is a great piece!

Adam Link says:
2/1/2011 at 4:15:07 PM

These tips are great... I'm trying out coaching a small team in the Air Force and these tips work for adults too. Thanks for helping me to see that I am on the right path with the way I do things during practice.

gabriel-uv says:
9/6/2012 at 9:55:18 PM


i''''m so glad to read this article and fun,its add up my wide knowledge in basketball coz to motivate player is one of the most hard time to learn.By these tips and guide i can now excel my winning goal not brain washing my player,the best thing i''''ve learn is to praise the player by achieving the set goals or by extending reward.

tyvm & God bless!


Peter says:
11/6/2012 at 7:35:26 AM

Competitive and fund drills - quite often I will finish my practices with "puzzle games". I split my team into smaller teams of 2 or 3 players per team. We then shoot 3's, 2's (outside the ley) and layups for puzzle pieces. 3's are worth 3, 2's worth 2 and layups are worth 1 puzzle piece. First team to put their puzzle together wins!

I use $2 puzzles - generally Disney ones that I pick up in the toy section of the local department store. The kids absolutely love these games and they compete hard to make sure they have the chance to win.

And these are high school girls!!! I cannot emphasize just how much these kids enjoy these games, amazes me almost every day!

Abby says:
11/18/2012 at 8:16:33 PM

I love these tips not just on to become a motivating coach but all of it. The drills the plays everything. I'm a 13year old girl and asked to volenteer to assistant coach a boys school team and these tips have really helped everything,

ogunbayo iyabode says:
9/3/2013 at 5:16:39 PM

Just getting to know more about this website, its an eye opener for me, i enjoyed the coaching tips and team motivation. I am a new coach and handle girls ages 10/ 14. My girls are not physically fit, what fitness drills can i introduce to them. thanks.Coach Iyabode Ogunbayo

Ken Sartini says:
9/3/2013 at 5:22:56 PM

I got this from another page of Breakthrough..

Important Tips:

When working with young kids and running basketball drills, there are three very important concepts you need to consider:

1 - Kids need to be highly active!

Just by using fast paced drills and keeping things moving, your players will have more fun and get in better condition. Your kids should be breathing hard and their hearts should be pumping. It's good for them!

Avoid standing in lines as much as possible and keep the ball in their hands as much as possible.

2 - Kids want to feel successful!

Picture by Shane Pope

With very youngs kids, competition doesn't always serve as a motivator. You should always provide activities that help them build their skills and confidence. Strive to focus on the learning process instead of measuring up to those around you.

You'll want to avoid adding pressure and competition until the players have developed their skills, confidence, and become proficient with the basics.

Put them in situations where they can succeed.

3 - Kids want to have lots of fun!

This is an important stage for young players and your actions could determine whether they enjoy sports or not.

It's important to make things fun so they can improve and become confident.

Youth basketball drills don't have to be boring. Almost any drill can be modified to provide high activity, high success, and high enjoyment.

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